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The Quadrant:MK, Milton Keynes GMW Architects

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[OFFICES] Case study 6

Located within Milton Keynes’ distinctive grid, GMW Architects’ The Quadrant:MK gateway building will accommodate more than 3,000 staff and facilitate new working practices for Network Rail.

The new national centre has an emphasis on sustainability, people, efficient processes and engagement. As Network Rail receives funding from taxpayers and the travelling public, it was also crucial that the project demonstrated value for money under government and media scrutiny.

The building is located in an entire block of the grid, formerly occupied by the national hockey stadium. GMW’s response proposed an office divided into four elements and united by a landscaped central atrium. The result is a highly efficient modern office with a vibrant community space at its heart; a light and colourful workplace that encourages flexible and collaborative working, is naturally ventilated and hits high sustainability targets (BREEAM ‘Excellent’); a building designed to support and inspire users and which relates to the town.

The atrium connects the four-storey office blocks on the ground floor and provides socialising and working spaces, a reception, cafés and retail. Office space on the upper floors is deliberately modest so that meeting and socialising happens in the atrium. High-level bridges span the atrium to increase the ease of circulation around the building and to reduce lift usage.

Chris Allwood, partner, GMW Architects

Project data

Completion June 2012
Cost £106,850,000
Gross internal area 36,176m²
Net:gross 86%
Cost/m² £1,819
Procurement Two-stage design and build
Client Network Rail
Structural engineer Waterman Group
M&E consultant URS

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